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Community based forest management: Organizacion de ejidos productores forestales en la zona Maya (OEPFZM) Management. Organizacion de Ejidos Productores Forestales de la Zona Maya (OEFPFZM). Mexico. [special] The World Bank/ WBI’s CBNRM Initiative

by Rose Hessmiller last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:10 AM

KEYWORD: Community-based Natural Forest Management, Central America. Central America, Mexico, community forestry, income distribution, small enterprise, land use, reforestation, decentralization, forest concession, institutional collaboration, research, training, equity, evaluation. SUMMARY: This World Bank evaluation examines community based forest management activities since 1984 in Quintana Roo, Mexico under The World Bank/ WBI’s CBNRM Initiative. Activities included institutional development, forest management, land use zoning, reforestation, small enterprise development and training. The authors review the evolution of community-based management and highlights lessons learned. A concession system was employed to allocate forests to foreign and Mexican timber enterprises until 1983, when concessions were transferred to community ownership. A unique aspect of this experiment was Mexico’s land tenure policy, under which legal ownership of the land is vested in the rural community. Support for the CBNFM program initially was in the form of two years of financing of forestry specialists. Upon termination of this support, team members and communities formed civil corporations (OEPFZM) for forest management enterprise. The authors attribute program success to: Communities’ engagement in concession reform and forest management; Support from government institutions in policy reform and capacity-building; Decentralization of administrative and management power to ejido corporations; Effective institutional development at the community level and linkage with regional ejidos, government, NGOs, and research institutions; Forest management and reforestation education and planning; Small enterprise development (agriculture, crafts, livestock) to supplement ejido incomes and relieve pressure on depleted forest resources; Equitable distribution of forest use and employment benefits; Community participation in financing operating costs; Internal research program, enhanced by collaboration with national and international organizations; Funding support from international foundations, for training, training, technical assistance, equipment and infrastructure, research, management plans. The document suggests that effective CBNFM is possible when: Community producers are involved in decision-making, promotion and organization; Institutional coordination allows efficient allocation of technical and financial support; Mechanisms of coordination exist to link different actors for specific production activity; Owners and users recognize the long-term economic benefits of NFM as an alternative to more immediately profitable, destructive forest uses.

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